Galleries & Museums
If you want to dive into Penang’s history, the State Museum is a great place to start. It started as an education centre in 1816, donated by the East India Company. It now houses a wide range of artifacts, models and paintings. The State Museum is located on Lebuh Farquhar, and you can find details here.
The State Art Gallery was added much later as an extension to the State Museum. It is focused on modern and contemporary art, complementing the historical collection at the State Museum. The State Gallery is located at the Ground Floor of Dewan Sri Pinang on Light Street. You can find details and directions here.
For up-and-coming contemporary art, visit the Run Amok Gallery on Hutton Lane. It features mainly visual art exhibitions focused on modern everyday experiences.
We also recommend visiting the Penang Camera Museum. It is the first of its kind in South East Asia and a real treat for those who love photography.
If you enjoy live music and genres like jazz, folk or spoken word, we recommend The Canteen @ China House. They’re well known for their delicious cakes as well as almost nightly performances by Malaysian and international performers.
If you’d like to enjoy original music, comedy, dance and more, look up Say It Like You Mean It [SILYMI]. This cabaret-style variety show happens once a month at The Canteen, from January to August.
If you’d prefer pop standards or familiar favourites, many bars and pubs in George Town offer weekend performances.
Penang island is becoming a hub for creative expression. This can be seen in the various street art all over George Town. Painted by international and local artists, many are commissioned works for the George Town Festival [GTF]. We recommend enjoying the art as you wander around the various streets and alleys in town. However, you can also find the full list of documented and commissioned artwork here.